December 29th, 2009
10:59 AM ET
9 years ago

The return of terror politics

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Rep. Peter Hoekstra posted a message on Twitter accusing the administration of 'stonewalling.'"]Washington (CNN) - When President Obama spoke out on the terrorism scare in Detroit, Michigan, he entered a debate that had already begun over his administration's new approach to combating terrorism.

"As a nation we will do everything in our power to protect our country," Obama said while vacationing in Hawaii. "We will continue to use every element of our national power to disrupt, to dismantle and defeat the violent extremists who threaten us, whether they are from Afghanistan or Pakistan, Yemen or Somalia, or anywhere where they are plotting attacks against the U.S. homeland."

Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab is being held for allegedly trying to blow up a flight carrying 300 passengers on Christmas Day. Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula claimed responsibility Monday for the attack, saying it was in retaliation for U.S. strikes on Yemeni soil.

On Sunday, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano initially gave something of a thumbs up to the government's handling of the Detroit terror scare.

"One thing I want to point out is that the system worked. Everybody played an important role here. The passengers and crew of the flight took appropriate action," Napolitano said on CNN's State of the Union.

Within minutes, Republicans went on the attack.

"Earlier today Secretary Napolitano said the system worked. in fact the system did not work," Rep. Peter King, R-New York, said on CBS' "Face the Nation."

Full story

Filed under: Peter Hoekstra • Peter King • President Obama
soundoff (82 Responses)
  1. billy123

    More GOP scare tactics. The airport loading procedures are the same as they were in 2008. However, that was when the GOP President George W. Bush was in office and the GOP in Congress said nothing?

    A bunch of hot air from the GOP!

    What the President and the GOP should state of the passager or passagers who help to deleate this horrible thing and that they were heroes..

    Then both parties should work together and fix this.

    December 29, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  2. Mike1952

    CNN has the ignorance to publish that this terrorist ALLEGEDLY tried to blow up the airplane. Good lord people, the guy had a bomb sewn in his underwear and tried to ignite it. It failed because of a malfunction of some kind. What will it take for these leftist "americans" to admit these people want us dead. Oh, of course, it will take more innocent deaths of children and women to make a slight dent in their steel heads. This is deplorable and despicable.

    December 29, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  3. chris l

    Any rational person realizes that as long as we have this weak President, terrorists will be emboldened to act. Its obvious.

    December 29, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  4. Pam from Iowa

    Excuse me Repubs, but who was in office when the worst terrorist attack on US soil occurred? A Republican!
    Who let bin Laden go free so big oil could get into Iraq? A Republican!

    December 29, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |

    i am so glad that our president takes time to contemplate the situation on any event rather than come out swinging like bush did. this makes our president look so much more in charge than these republicans that start foaming at the mouth before any facts are in. president obama is intelligent and gives off such a strong leadership position that shows america will not live in fear of the enemy. i feel so much safer with president obama than i ever did with bush/cheney making foolish decisions about our security.americans should rally around our president and give him the support he deserves for all the smart moves he is making for the good of ALL of us. he clearly makes the loons[republicans] on the right look like morans and ignorant to how a strong super-power country such as ours works. to blame our president with such ignorant garbage shows me they are so envious of this mans knowledge and strenghts. barack obama will easily be elected for his second term because the majority of americans are behind this president firmly!!

    December 29, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  6. Marion/Alabama

    Why did it take Obama 3 days to say anything? Why are we treating this terrorist as a criminal,he is not a citizen and deserves NO rights under our constitution?Even FDR took Foreign agents to Military tribunal and had them executed. This Terrorist needs to be executed,we are in a war. Our greatest danger is thinking we can reason with Evil.

    December 29, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  7. Mike Ross

    Actually, since Pete Hoekstra has been, in his own words, "intimately involved with national security for 10 years" shouldn't he take the blame for 9/11, the 2003 Cole bombing, our embassies being bombed a few years ago, Richard Reid, The underpants bomber, and the rest?

    December 29, 2009 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  8. shmeckell

    The return of terror politics. The terrorists never left, it is just the politicians ignored them because their followers are in denial. The only one playing politics here is Gibbs. Gibbs still managed to point a finger at Bush, are you kidding me. It has been a year, there is this little matter of national security, why is it on the back burner and why did it take a year and a botched terrorist attack to reviewed and maintain the policies.

    I don’t blame Obama (you have to trust the ones you put in charge), but if he leaves Napolitano in charge of our safety it would be extremely irresponsible. There is no excuse that these procedures have yet been reviewed. Our safety is her job, it is her only job, and for her to have not even reviewed these safety procedures as of yet is a slap in the face of every American. She is not in a position that can afford mistakes, and this is inexcusable.

    December 29, 2009 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  9. JB - NYC

    The Terrorists father warned us about his son in August 2009.. Why did Obama ignore the warning???

    December 29, 2009 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  10. michael armstrong sr. TX.

    When did we ever leave terror politics the radical Muslims have been after us for over 40 years.

    December 29, 2009 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  11. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but...

    Maybe this little incident wouldn't have occurred had the republicans not been blocking the nomination of a new head of the TSA. Have a nice day!

    December 29, 2009 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  12. TM in CO

    Come on people. Terrorism is not a partisan problem. It is an American problem that affects us all.

    December 29, 2009 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  13. Ancient Texan

    We've seen our President apologize to every terrorist aligned country in the world, and it didn't work. They just drew from his words and actions, that he's very weak on this nation's security.

    December 29, 2009 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  14. unemployed by Obama

    Obama has made us less safe with his dealings with terroist and not protecting America. Obama's policies with the muslims has created a new wave and Obama does not want to stop it because he does not believe that it is happening. Obama is a friend to these terroist.

    December 29, 2009 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  15. David in West Virgina

    Our nation's security should not be politicized by our politicians; instead, they should be working together to find ways to protect Americans. I think Americans get tired of Republicans wanting to use fear to win elections. It's not about winning elections, it's about doing the job to which all potiticians are elected. It doesn't matter how much security is put in place, eventually a way is found to break through the security mechanisms, otherwise, this problem would have been solved years ago.

    So to all politicians, get with doing your best and that's all we as citizens can ask, nothing else. And, stop the politics!!!!

    December 29, 2009 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  16. NYCitizen

    Unleash the CIA and let them do what they are trained to do.....

    December 29, 2009 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  17. ck

    The amount it took to completely blow apart the front section a DC-10 was HALF as much as the bomber had strapped to him.

    WAKE UP AMERICA! The Muslim extremists live for one reason, to kill us, and that means all of us. Republicans, Demoracts... everyone.

    So which are you, one who sits and waits for it to happen or one that does what it takes to stop it?

    December 29, 2009 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  18. Chris D.

    I'm so sick and tired of the GOP trying to make a comeback on everything from the economy, to national security that they fumbled the ball on themselves.......
    The real pressure is on the international community, who are doing the shotty job around here.......
    The President, nor anyone in office, should be blamed for this horrible snafu........
    These terror list, and no fly lists should be digitally dowloaded into all commercial airports worldwide, so names can be compared and contrasted quickly.......also the CIA, and FBI, must work together more.........

    December 29, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  19. Mark

    Way to go Hoekstra! By letting Al Qaeda know that we are sending special ops into Yemen you just blew their cover. Every time that man opens his mounth to score political points he gives up secret info. They need to take away his security clearance.

    December 29, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  20. Hammerer

    Paint this anyway you want, but this administration has done nothing but enable "the extremist".
    Apologize,bow down, criticize American citizens, is their way.
    Ft. Hood was investigated and where are the results, Obama refuses to release the reports along with the other reports on acts of terroism that have been commited.
    Why? Is it because he knows that the results would show some of the dangers? Is it because he plans to move these "extremist" from Gitmo to the US and invite more attacks?Or that the trials planned in NY will provide more opportunity for "extremist" actions?
    Whose side are these people really on?

    December 29, 2009 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  21. J Danna

    WOW! I cannot believe that anyone here would want to jump up and kill this man. How does not trying this man in a court of law and subjecting him to torture make us any better than the terrorists that are attacking the U.S? Let's get one fact straight, no matter what you do, when someone wants to do something evil they will find away. Running away from our principals because we are scared is not the answer. We must stand together, try this man and convict him. America needs stop yelling at each other and realize that compassion is not weakness.

    December 29, 2009 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  22. big papa

    NOTHING invokes terror in many of us Americans than the thought of Republicans (conservatives) like Pete Hoekstra and Joe Lieberman gaining power...

    ...As the last 8 years have proven unequivocally...

    ...Conservative Republicans and those masquerading as Independents are more dangerous to our fragile democracy than any Al Qaeda bomber could ever be...

    ...Pete Hoekstra and his Republican co-conspirators represent the worst of America...

    ...He/ they have no business being in government because they don't BELIEVE in government...

    ...hopefully in 2010 Hoekstra and his treasonous, obstuctionist, right wing ideological crowd will officially go the way of the Whigs...

    December 29, 2009 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  23. lbw

    The system, which the administration says worked, is supposed to keep radicals with explosives off of our aircraft. The reason a disaster was avoided was a lucky failure of the terrorists bomb to detonate.

    December 29, 2009 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  24. CNN afraid of a liberal post

    Hoekstra the huckester....trying to get a leg up on the run for governor of Michigan. Can an immigrant be elected to the position of Michigan governor. I know in some states you can. And look at this piece of crap complaining about immigrants, when he is and immigrant. Became an American citizen after being born in Netherlands.

    December 29, 2009 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  25. Independent fromLa.

    Has everyone forgotton that the 911 suspects were identified under Clinton's Administration and nothing was ever done about it, just like with Bin Laden. The attack was planned long before Bush ever took over...The some of the Suspects were here in the U.S. before Bush was sworn....get off this ""All Bush's"" fault.

    December 29, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
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